Time for a special 'treat' to end the year - three mini, barely remembered battle reports in one blog entry! This is the three 'casual' games I had against regular-opponent-John at the Element Games Grand Slam that we attended in November, and the last bit of content I've got from that event.
The first two games were played on the night before the event. We both took an extra 1000 point list for casual games against randoms, but having both just come off night shifts we decided socialising was hard and just played against each other a couple of times. My list was detailed here, but in essence it was an Ork Warboss, a Weirdboy, 3 units of 20+ boyz and a Gorkanaut. This would be my first games with the new Ork book, so I was pretty excited to get use out of the new stratagems and stuff. John took a Chaos Lord, Sorcerer, 2 Helbrutes (I think they had autocannons and missile launchers), 2 Contemptors with butcher cannons and 2 decimators with storm lasers. Classic John.
Our first game was... something with objectives? Whatever it was, we lined up like this:
John went first and moved up to get shots off and cover some objectives. He killed some Orks and grabbed a central objective, in front of the Gorkanaut...
In my turn I played the ramming speed stratagem on the 'naut, and rolled that! Ugh! The boyz got in though.
They were unable to bring the dread down though, and in John's turn they were all but destroyed with his combined firepower. However, a few of them clung on...
Enough for the Green Tide stratagem! I also cast Da Jump on the Warboss, putting him in a position to charge the Lord.
The Gorkanaut waddled over to the other side of the board, looming over the dreads in that corner, while a few remaining shoota boyz held an objective.
Charges were made, but John's stompy robots made it our alive, disengaging away on their long legs. Return fire gutted the unit somewhat.
However the Gorkanaut eventually made it in, and made a right mess of one of the Helbrutes.
I remember there was an epic clash between the two warlords, both surviving the other's deadly claws against all odds. John later fell back and shot the Warboss, who managed to hang on on barely any wounds.
Eventually he charged back in to beat up the Contemptor that had escaped the Gorkanaut in turn one. I can't remember if he did kill it, but I'm pretty sure he died shortly after.
Meanwhile the Gorkanaut was very much enjoying his first outing, clearing everything for the right flank, including the other Contemptor. He is an absolute monster in melee! The game ended, with him pretty much my only model left. I'd lost on victory points, but I was happy with the carnage I'd inflicted!
Game two we set up the same armies, but using the same mission and deployment we would be using in game 1 the next morning.
We set up something like this, with me pushing forward in the centre and John's dreads spread out in a wide arc. John decided the Gorkanaut just had to die, and this time he put all of his firepower into it on turn one. It took a hell of a beating, but eventually it fell into a pile of bullet-ridden scrap.
I started moving up. I tried to use Green Tide and Da Jump to pop two units behind John's lines, but Da Jump failed. I them proceeded to fail the charge. Being unable to tie up any of the dreads, and with my hard hitting Gorkanaut dead, I conceded there and then. There was absolutely no question that unit would be destroyed in John's turn, which left me with only some shoota boyz who could either sit back and lose on objectives or charge forward/Da Jump in, and die. And actually, we were quite sleepy.
First two games with the Orks were a close loss, and a crushingly fast defeat, but I was getting a bit of a taste for how they are supposed to work and how with a few key rolls going my way I could have tied up more units, made more charges, cast more powers etc.
So, we jump ahead to the end of day 1 and we've got time for another game. We were going to play a practice game at some point with our two tournament armies, but never managed to schedule it ahead of the event, so we decided to play it halfway through, obviously. If you've been keeping track of things, you'll know that apparently this actually worked, because we both won our last two games.
I was of course running my Adeptus Mechanicus / Imperial Knight Imperium force, as seen here. Roughly speaking, it features A Ryza battalion with Tech Priest Dominus, Enginseer, 5 Rangers, 5 Vanguard, 5 Plasma Destroyers, 2 Fist Kastelans, 2 Blaster Kastelans and Datasmith, then the Knight detachment with 2 Warglaives and the Valiant.
John's list was a very tasty, very beautiful Chaos concoction. An Emperor's Children battalion with a Lord, Sorcerer, 2x10 Cultists and 18 Noise Marines, backed up by a Hellforged Spartan in a superheavy auxiliary and a Renegade Knight detachment with two 'Gallants' and a 'Warglaive'.
For context, in the final standings John and his list finished 12th (and picked up second best army) while I ended up at 45th (out of 86).
I forget what mission we played, but it was on a very pretty board! I think we both knew that, though there were objectives, this was going to be all about killing stuff.
John got first turn, moving his Knights up and targeting the Valiant with the Spartan, which in classic John style, whiffed and left the Knight largely undamaged.
My first turn, and the counter punch was brutal. The Kataphrons moved up and used the Elimination Volley/Plasma Specialists combo to supercharge their plasma culverins and blasted 21 wounds off one of the Gallants. Other shooting easily finished it off, and the Valiant combined with the Armigers critically damaged the other renegade Knight, though not quite finishing it off. This is exactly the situation the Kataphrons excel at, and they absolutely did. They subsequently bought it the next turn when the Noise Marines disembarked, but they had done their job!
The remaining 'Gallant', the Armiger and the Spartan combined on turn two to kill off one of the Armigers (I think), and put some more wounds on the Valiant, but hilariously the big knight failed it's very short charge into the Valiant after John foolishly used his last command point to rotate ion shields in his charge phase to mitigate the punishing overwatch.
In my turn the Knights cleaned up the last of their former brothers, while the Phosphor blaster robots blasted the noise marines. I think the Valiant charged the last one to slingshot itself up the board.
At this point John pretty much just had the Spartan and cultists left. The Spartan whiffed again, the Valiant finished it off, and John called it there. A convincing victory for the Imperial forces! The servitors were absolutely savage in this game, and the Valiant did the business yet again. At this stage I'm head over heels for the thing, it's absolutely my favourite unit in this army, so it and the pilot need a name.
I've decided that she is named Lady Helena, and she rides The Defiant Flame.